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Child Development Research
Volume 2013, Article ID 324217, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/324217
Research Article

The Relationship between Mothers’ Attachment Orientations and Their Infants’ Sleep Patterns

Department of Behavioral Sciences, Ariel University, Ariel 40700, Israel

Received 1 August 2013; Accepted 16 September 2013

Academic Editor: Annie Vinter

Copyright © 2013 Diana Cohenca-Shiby and Shiri Schonbach-Medina. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Objective. In this paper we examine the association between mothers’ attachment style and their infants’ sleep patterns. We hypothesized that low levels of anxiety and avoidance attachment orientations would enable the mother to use more efficient strategies to put her infant to sleep, and in time the infant will assimilate these strategies and consequently develop suitable and more independent sleep routines. Participants and Measures. The 125 mothers who participated in this study completed (a) a measure of attachment orientations (b) and a measure of mother’s perception of their infant’s sleep patterns. Results. The results indicated that the greater the mothers’ avoidance attachment orientation is, the longer it takes to put the child to bed at night, the more wakeful the child is at night, and the more the night wakings are. However, for mothers with high anxiety attachment orientation, there is a positive correlation between child’s age and the time it takes to put him/her to bed, such that the older the child, the longer it takes. Conclusions. The implications of the parent strategies for putting infants to bed on infants’ sleep patterns are discussed. Suggestions for future studies examining broader implications of the results are offered.